Monthly Archives: November 2012

Archives November 30, 2012 posted by

Full text of MoU with troika


THE TROIKA on Friday gave the green light for the Memorandum of Understanding with the Cyprus government to be released to the political parties.  The full text of the ‘Memorandum of Understanding on Specific Economic Policy Conditionality’ is attached as a PDF and Word document. 


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Archives November 30, 2012 posted by

First real taste of austerity unrest


CYPRUS saw its first real taste of austerity-related unrest yesterday when hundreds of casual government workers due to be laid off, stormed first through the finance ministry and then parliament.

A total of 992 seasonal government employees will be out of work starting from today as part of government cuts, about half of whom took to the streets yesterday. The move aims to save €9 million a year.

Inside parliament, Finance Minister Vassos Shiarly was briefing the House Finance Committee on the status of talks with international lenders, the troika.

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Archives November 30, 2012 posted by

Our View: Now government must deal with consequences of nepotistic practice

A COUPLE of hundred men hired as casual labourers, on an hourly rate, by the government went on the rampage yesterday after they were informed that they would not be offered work in the future. First they invaded the foreign ministry demanding to see the minister and then they marched to the legislature where they pushed aside the police guard and entered demanding to be seen by the House president.

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Archives November 30, 2012 posted by

Popular Bank had chance to offload Greek bonds in 2009


FORMER CEO of Popular Bank Efthymios Bouloutas primarily, but also former chairman of the board Andreas Vgenopoulos, share responsibility for the purchase of Greek government bonds that went sour with the subsequent Greek haircut, an internal audit by the bank has found.

The confidential memo, which the Cyprus Mail has seen, is dated May 22, 2012 and titled “Internal Audit report on the purchase of Greek Government Bonds.” It was compiled as a response to an inquiry made by the Central Bank on 29 February.

It points out that “many factors have contributed to the problem. It is not just the high-risk appetite.” But it goes on to list the individuals “whose role was instrumental to our losses.”

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Archives November 30, 2012 posted by

Aid tranche could come in January


CYPRUS could receive the first tranche of a bailout by the end of January, Finance Minister Vassos Shiarly said yesterday, provided that an agreement is struck with eurozone members by mid-December.

It could be an uphill struggle for Cyprus however, as some countries may raise demands.

After agreement at the Eurogroup, the deal would have to be approved by individual eurozone member-states.

“The procedure at Eurogroup level is not easy and it will be even more difficult in some parliaments of eurozone members which have certain impressions about Cyprus that we need to dispel,” Shiarly told the House Finance Committee. “There are countries, which will have demands.”

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Archives November 30, 2012 posted by

Hellenic Bank bucks the trend

HELLENIC Bank, the island’s third-biggest lender has bucked the trend, posting a nine-month net profit of €219,000 despite a 27 per cent rise in provisions for non-performing loans.

Hellenic said it recorded a 49 per cent rise in net revenues, to around €248 million while managing to cut expenses by 7 per cent – €119 million.

The lender, the least exposed to Greece from the Cypriot banks, said provisions for impairment of loans rose 27 per cent to €128.6 million.

Excluding the cost of impairment of the Greek government bonds, the profit of the group before provisions amounts to €136.6 million, recording an increase of 46 per cent compared to the corresponding period last year. 

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Archives November 30, 2012 posted by

Banking consultants rubbish deputy’s claim

A RESTRUCTURING firm auditing Cyprus’ two major banks yesterday set the record straight on a rumour spread by a deputy for main opposition party DISY, which was picked up by the press.

The Central Bank in August hired the professional services and restructuring firm Alvarez & Marsal (A&M) to look into the Bank of Cyprus and the Popular Bank, which have asked for state aid. 

“Recently, it has been mistakenly reported in news outlets and other means that one of our employees, Spyros Martsekis, based outside of Cyprus, has participated [in the investigation],” A&M said. 

The media were reporting on an allegation made by DISY MP Kyriacos Hadjiyiannis.

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Archives November 30, 2012 posted by

Brits mulled propaganda comics to sway teen EOKA rebels


COLONIAL officials in Cyprus considered producing adventure comic books and running an essay competition in a propaganda bid to stop young Greek Cypriots rebelling against British rule, previously secret government files have revealed.

Schoolchildren threw petrol bombs, caused disturbances and regularly went on strike from school during the mid-1950s as they sided with the nationalist EOKA movement for “Enosis” – union with Greece – the Foreign Office files revealed.

In 1956, Colonial Secretary Alan Lennox-Boyd damned a record of 18 months of disturbance from secondary school pupils.

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Archives November 30, 2012 posted by

Dozens of new HIV cases in Cyprus every year

HUNDREDS of people in Cyprus have AIDS and dozens are diagnosed with the HIV virus every year, the health ministry said yesterday. 

But Cyprus is subscribing to the United Nations’ goal of zero new infections or AIDS-related deaths by 2015, Health Minister Androulla Agrotou said yesterday at a news conference for World AIDS Day commemorated tomorrow. 

From 1986 until 2011, a total of 735 people have been diagnosed with HIV in Cyprus and 118 have died, according to the health ministry’s epidemiological study. 

Up until October, this year 49 people were diagnosed with HIV in Cyprus, 54 people were diagnosed last year and 41 were diagnosed in 2010. 

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